Three Things We Learned at Trade Summit Southeast Asia

Since 2006 AgriBusiness Global™ (ABG) has hosted Trade Summits in all corners of the world in an effort to empower smarter sourcing and facilitate connection and transparency throughout the crop input value chain.

Three Things We Learned at Trade Summit Southeast Asia

Bill Cui (left) and Jorge Zhao of Haoyuan Industries (Shanghai) Co., Ltd confer with a local attendee. Nearly 40 exhibitors met with current and potential partners on the trade show floor at The Westin Jakarta.


Apart from the annual global event in the Americas, Trade Summits have migrated from Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, to Buenos Aires, Argentina; Kuala Lampur, Malaysia; San Jose, Costa Rica; and beyond for the last 13 years. In recent years, however, the event has found a home in Jakarta, Indonesia. On 4-5 December, with the help of the Indonesian CropCare Association (the event’s official supporters), ABG inaugurated the fourth Trade Summit Southeast Asia.

Original attendee estimates of 400 were exceeded when more than 500 delegates came to gather market intel and meet current and potential trade partners from around the world.

Here’s what we learned at the 2018 Trade Summit Southeast Asia:

1. The Government is Setting Up the Agribusiness Industry for Success

Attendees received key information on how to, and what it’s like to do, business in this sector in Southeast Asia. In Dr. Piyatida (Tung) Pukclai’s presentation, she gave a rundown of the steps to obtain registration in countries, including Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, the Philippines, and Indonesia.

One key takeaway was the improvement being made in government communication in Indonesia and the increased ease and transparency of registration in-country.

Dr. Pukclai recognized that in the past it has been very difficult to get information on what’s currently registered in the marketplace as far as pesticides are concerned in Indonesia. The government is actively working to improve that.

One way they’re improving this information is with the launch of an online database of registered active ingredients and technical materials (which can be found at

Furthermore, the Indonesian government is now regularly updating its websites with news and rolling approvals.
For those parties interested in registering new products in Indonesia, the steps to do so have become more clear, and timeline estimates and associated costs are fairly predictable.

2. Demand for Sustainable Tools is High

Three Things We Learned at Trade Summit Southeast Asia

Regional news agencies conduct interviews at Trade Summit Southeast Asia in support of clear legislation for biological products. (From left) Final Prajnanta, Indonesian CropCare Association, Dr. Riza Arief Putranto, Indonesian Research Institute for Biotechnology and Bioindustry, Rebecca Bartels, AgriBusiness Global, Joachim Nachmansohn, Nachmansohn Consulting & Co., and Joko Suwondo, Indonesian CropCare Association.

Demand for products supporting an integrated portfolio (including biological and traditional chemical crop inputs) and products with a focus on plant nutrition and soil health have undoubtedly increased in recent years.

Suppliers were on site serving this demand, with exhibitors in this product category rising year over year, including companies such as PT Prima Agro Tech, Beijing Multigrass Formulation Co. Ltd., AgriLife, Sulphur Mills Limited, and AgLukon.

Furthermore, the Indonesian CropCare Association facilitated a press conference on site at Trade Summit Southeast Asia, in which four regional news agencies interviewed two of the event’s speakers, two CropCare executives, and ABG’s business director. The press conference yielded articles across multiple Southeast Asian news sites, urging the government to support the regulation and further popularization of biostimulants and biocontrols.

Final Prajnanta, Chairperson of the Event Committee for the Indonesian CropCare Association, used the platform to communicate that, while it’s true that the Indonesian government has recommended the use of biological products since 1992’s Integrated Pest Management program, there’s more to be done than simple recommendations. “The making of policies and regulations regarding biopesticides and biostimulants is very urgent for the government to do in advancing sustainable Indonesian agriculture,” he said.

3. The Outlook for Southeast Asian Ag is Optimistic

Joko Suwondo, Chairman of Indonesian CropCare Association, presented on the state of the local industry as well as expectations for the future.

Three Things We Learned at Trade Summit Southeast Asia

Joko Suwondo, Chairman of the Indonesian CropCare Association, briefs the delegation on the market outlook, including the nation’s industry value by key crops and input types.

He said 2018 presented unique challenges, from an unusually long drought to low commodity prices and an unfavorable exchange rate for the Indonesian Rupiah.

Despite the hurdles, Suwondo echoed third-party expectations of growth (with Euromonitor, for example, estimating Indonesia’s agrichemical industry to hit U.S. $1.3 billion by 2021). Suwondo told attendees to anticipate 8% growth for the pesticide industry in 2019, telling the delegation that “Indonesia will remain an interesting country for investment.”

With registrants making the journey from countries such as Guatemala, the United States, Israel, Ireland, Thailand, Germany, Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore, and Vietnam, ABG was able to confirm at the closing ceremony that Trade Summit Southeast Asia will return to Jakarta in 2019, following the success of the 2018 event.

Taking place 3-4 December at The Westin Jakarta, AgriBusiness Global looks forward to continuing to serve the Southeast Asian market and support the rapid growth in this region.

For more information on the December 2019 event, please visit or contact Rebecca Bartels at [email protected].